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Sunday, 10 September 2006



Hi Ed - And when it's really bad, it's like eating flavorless sawdust! LOL!


Just stumbled across your extremely useful posts - wow!! Living on the central coast now and need to plan my culinary trips with care. Will definitely try some of your favorites. Do you and the Missus do any of your own cooking? I'm trying to find a place in SoCal to buy 朝天椒 (cháo tiān jiāo) for Sichuan cooking at home. Any leads would be very welcome!!!


Kirk, Chin's was spectacular... the shaobing youtiao was awesome. When I walked in, I wasn't sure if I had walked into the correct restaurant. It kind of looked like a Marie Calenders with wine and a buffet bar and a cake display case.. then I saw that almost all the patrons were Chinese. This has the to be the first time I've ever seen a Chinese restaurant with a cake display case! What I'm curious is whether everybody get's the Chinese only menu? They only gave me a Chinese menu which is not a problem for me (since I can read elementary chinese now)... but if you're a westerner, what will they get? just the regular menu?

Great find! Thanks so much.


Hi Stelle - Thanks so much for stopping by and the very kind words. There's really only 99 Ranch Market here in San Diego, but a ton of places in Monterey Park, Alhambra, San Gabriel, and Rowland Heights - if you're really picky you'll probably find what you need there.

Hi CSB - Glad you enjoyed yourself. That generic restaurant look really throws you, doesn't it? If you don't appear to be Chinese you'll get the regular Dinner menu.


Thanks, Kirk - I'll check it out, and will definitely keep stopping by =)


Hi Stelle - Just in Rowland Heights there are 2 99 Ranch Markets - one on Azusa, and one on Gale off Nogales, Hong Kong Market on Colima Road, right across the street is SF Market. Another interesting place is TS Emporium on Nogales between Colima and Gale. I'm pretty sure if it's to be found, you'll find it there!


You always have some brilliant pictures and these are mouth wateringly good. Keep those pictures coming.


Hi James - Thanks for the very kind words...I'm still trying to take better photos!


do you know of anywhere else to get fan tuan around the san diego area?


Hi Judy - This is the only place the Missus recalls seeing fan tuan on the menu. I'll get back to you if we see it on other menus in San Diego.

Jenni Shih

I was just there this past weekend and they now have a translated english version of the chinese breakfast menu--no prices next to it but it's the same list of stuff.

good stuff!


Hi Jenni - Thanks for the info! That's great news, we haven't been back to Chin's in about a month, but I'm sure we'll be back there soon.


Just went to Chin's this morning. Read your posts about Chin's prior to the brunch and thought it's gonna be a great feast. It turned out decent, except one incident. We ordered mi gao (meh..), rice wine chicken, shao bing you tiao (love it!), salty soy milk(not salty enough for me but the texture and content are good),beef shao bing(crunchy and savory),celery with wasabi souce(alright),rice cakes with preserved mustard and pork (love that flavor), short ribs( my personal favorite) and custard buns(not bad). We also had the sesame rice ball for desert since we got it for free and it's a must-have item in Chin's. The whole meal was great except when one of the waiters came over and greeted one of the white males by saying "this type of food must surprises you, hum?" The same waiter who grabbed the chopsticks to give to my asian friend on the same table when there was one pair short without even asking. that just wrong.. (cont.)


The same waiter also told my white friend ( same guy) that 'what you bother to ask the cost of your wine, you are not going to pay anyway' when my friend dined with other asian friends and he wanted to know how much a glass of wine is. Besides that, the other incident happened today was we found a hair inside the rice cake with perserved mustard and sliced pork and had to ask them to send it back. They didn't really apologize for it yet got us another plate of the same dish.

overall, I think Chin's is one of the best and affordable Chinese restaurants in San Diego. The manager at the Miramar location has a great attitute for customer service and most of their waiters and waitresses are helpful. Without those biased comments from that particular waiter, we certain would enjoy going there much more.


Hi Jubileenz - That hair thing sounds terrible.... I would think that my post reflected that not everything was a "home run" here. But the food at Chin's is very reasonably priced by San Diego standards. Now if I had a dollar for everytime I've been told "you speak pretty good English"(I was born and raised in the US) in San Diego......but of course, my standard answer is a simple "so do you!"


Yes, this restaurant used to be a Marie Callenders. You recognized the pie display case and the salad bar (the buffet). After Marie, it was a Bread Basket restaurant (like the one in Alpine) before it became Chins.

It's good to know that they have an English version of the Chinese breakfast menu. I'm with the Missus on having jook with the fried donuts; I'm not keen on soy milk.


Hi Sandy - Check it out, and let me know how you like it.

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